Welcome to Module 4, Nodes with AWS Services and AWS Elastic Container Service. Before we dive deeper in AWS, let's take an overview, a high-level overview of what type of cloud computing is out there. Infrastructure as a service, this is the most… the foundational building block, it's the cornerstone, it's the bricks and the cement of the cloud computing. Everything else is built on the infrastructure as a service. Think about IaaS as your virtual machines in the cloud.
Then we have platform as a service. Many of you are familiar with Heroku or Elastic Beanstalk. They offer you better environment, application environment. Typically, you don't have to manage a lot of things. They take care of security, of patches, of updates, of scalability, they take care of a lot of things for you. You just provide your code for the application, and specify environment, configure it a little bit, not too much, and boom, it's working.
And then, we have backend as a service, which is mostly for the databases, but also, you might have heard about services such as Parse.com, Firebase, and Compose, used to be named MongoHQ, and mLab as well. In AWS, there are RDS and DynamoDB, those are services. They are your backend as a service, your database.
And then we have FaaS as a service, functions as a service. This is a newer concept. Sometimes, it's called serverless. So it offers you even more abstraction, so you don't even code an application, you just code a piece of application, you just code a function, and you upload it to the cloud, and this way, it's running. They take care of everything for you, but again, it offers less ability to be customized and less flexibility.
And then all of you are familiar with SaaS. You've watched me discourse on the SaaS. It's software as a service such as Google Docs, Gmail, Google Maps, etc. There are a lot of benefits of the cloud. We're not going to list all of them, just a few of them. There is no capital expenditure, you don't have to invest a lot of money. You get massive benefit of scale, and you can work from anywhere, and you can deliver your applications faster, and you can automate a lot of those things.
There are a lot of cloud providers. The major ones are Microsoft Azure, Google Cloud, and Amazon Web Services, AWS. AWS is de facto, the standard. It has many services. It started, was one of the first. It has massive scale. It's mostly de facto the standard. If you go to a company, work on a project, most likely, they already use AWS or they considered using it at some point. Lots of tools, which makes it great for developers. And a lot of new features which are not available on other platforms such as Azure, they first… they become implemented in AWS. They actually have a lot of talented people working on it full time.